Traditional Board Games

Puluc Game, Strategy Game w/ pre-Columbian origins, cherry wood board game, handcrafted, customizable w/ wood-burned artwork - MADE TO ORDER



  • Details
    A board game known as “Puluc”, also known as “Boolik” or “Bul” in some Central American locales. This handcrafted wooden board game is played by descendants of the Mayan people, the Kekchi, located in the northern regions of Guatemala. Though no extant boards or carved diagrams of this particular game have been found actually dating back to the Mayan age, it was first chronicled in the early 1800's, and is widely believed by scholars and enthusiasts to have ancient origins due to similarities to other known games and artefacts from the Mesoamerican era. Beautifully crafted from cherry wood and decorated in sepia tones through the art of pyrography, this game has a great old world feel and appearance, while still conveying a modern presence. A wonderful addition for the avid game collector as well as admirers of pre-Columbian art styles. This game will challenge players and attract admirers for many generations to come.

    This board is MADE TO ORDER, typically requiring 2 weeks to create; the pictures shown are supplied as example of a finished product only. Your board will be handcrafted at the time of order and be completely unique from any other.

    *The chart for ARTWORK SELECTION is located in the photos. An online library of high resolution artwork selection charts for this listing, as well as others in the shop, can be found here:

    • Puluc game board constructed of 3/4" thick cherry wood; with a trimmed/framed edge (trim used may vary; according to availability). The finished board measures approximately 15 x 6 inches. This game board is being produced in cherry wood only.
    • All artwork is achieved through the use of pyrography, the art of wood-burning by hand. The available selectable artwork is a mixture of historical pictographs and hieroglyphs from multiple pre-Columbian cultures, as well as ornamental designs from the region. The board will be finished with a natural, non-pigmented stain, and a satin lacquer has been applied to protect the artwork and wood.
    • Playing pieces are included in the form of wooden 'checker-type' pieces and casting sticks for movement, both made from maple. A drawstring bag is supplied for storage of the pieces, and a rules pamphlet is also included.

    • Puluc, also called Boolik and Bul, is a game played by the Kekchi people of north Guatemala in Central America. It is played in the remote outlying districts, often by the light of a fire. The Kekchi people are known to be descendants of the ancient Mayans. Much of the history of Puluc is gained from inference, having only been initially chronicled in the early 1800's. An American ethnographer, Stewart Culin, known for his number of studies concerning games around the world, excluded it from a list of games that had been influenced by Europeans, suggesting that it was invented before - or was at least unaffected by - European contact. Enigmatic stone etchings depicting a similar game have also been found, along with an X-shaped board where two tracks overlay each other, similar but with significant differences to the Aztec game “Patolli”.
    • The game is played by two players on a one-dimensional board, separated into eleven spaces by single lines. The playing space at each end of the board serves as a home city for a player, with the other nine spaces forming the track. Each player starts the game with five pieces of his color, all starting in his home city. The players each throw the casting sticks, and whoever throws the highest takes the first turn. A player's turn consists of throwing the casting sticks then moving one of his pieces. If the player has pieces in his home city, he may move one onto the track, by the number of spaces shown by the casting sticks. Alternatively, if the player has other non-captured pieces already on the track, he may move one of these by the appropriate number of spaces instead. Enemy pieces are captured by landing on them (in their space). A player may not land one of his own pieces on top of another, unless the latter is a captive of the enemy. When a moving piece reaches or passes the enemy city, he and any freed compatriots with him are returned to his home city, and his enemy captives are killed and removed from play. If the captured enemy himself had captives, those captives are considered freed and they will accompany their deliverer to the home space. A player wins the game when all his opponents’ pieces have been either killed or captured and further movement is impossible.

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  • Shipping & Policies

    Shipping from United States

    Processing time

    2-3 weeks

    Estimated shipping times

    • North America : 3 - 5 business days

    I'll do my best to meet these shipping estimates, but can't guarantee them. Actual delivery time will depend on the shipping method you choose.

    Customs and import taxes

    Buyers are responsible for any customs and import taxes that may apply. I'm not responsible for delays due to customs.

    Payment Options

    Secure options
    • Accepts Etsy gift cards

    Returns & Exchanges

    I gladly accept returns and exchanges

    Just contact me within: 7 days of delivery

    Ship items back to me within: 14 days of delivery

    I don't accept cancellations

    But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

    The following items can't be returned or exchanged

    Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:

    • Custom or personalized orders
    • Perishable products (like food or flowers)
    • Digital downloads
    • Intimate items (for health/hygiene reasons)
    • Items on sale

    Conditions of return

    Buyers are responsible for return shipping costs. If the item is not returned in its original condition, the buyer is responsible for any loss in value.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Wholesale availability

    Due to the nature of the majority of my work, and the typical amount of business that comes through my shop, wholesale items are not available.

    Custom and personalized orders

    Please contact me before placing an order should you desire customizations not outlined or offered in any particular listing.

    Holiday ordering

    During the Christmas holiday season, I can quickly become VERY busy; typically putting in 12 hour days in order to make holiday shipping deadlines.
    Please plan ahead - I begin taking Christmas orders in late August, but due to workload, I will close the shop to further made-to-order requests the first week of December. Ready to ship items remain listed and ship as stated in their listing.

    Shipping times

    In the case of any custom or Made To Order item, I try very hard to meet the listed production/ship time for the listed item. However, I am a one-man shop, and the handcrafted nature of the work, particularly during busy periods, can cause delays. If you require your item by a specific date, please inquire first. I do not rush the work, as I want each piece to be exceptional and worthy to the person purchasing it. Thank you for your patience and understanding, and of course, your patronage!

  • Reviews

    Reviews (3)


    Just received this - game is beautiful and solidly made - was a joy to play on this board. The pieces were very nice as well!

    Exactly as shown in photo. High quality all around. Very fair price for such a nice item!

    Personne sérieuse objet conforme à la description très joli travail envoi rapide et soigné